Moments from Recent Weeks that I've Been Meaning to Write About

[Actually, many of these I have already written about, in my letters, when I my unlucky deeds relate. But no more of that.--paulmonsterEd.]

  • I couldn't resist. I spent $60.00 at Powell's the other day. I work at the Library, I have 36 boxes worth of books already, and I still blow the bulk of my paycheck into more books. I'm such a loser. And it's so worth it.
  • I'm riding down the Long Gentle Slope of SE Hawthorne on my bike, knees tucked in and my torso low over my handlebars, slightly off the seat to take the knots and whorls of the buckling roadway. I'm daydreaming about rare books and watching the colors painted on the sky, and, yeah, okay, maybe I was watching one or two beautiful women walking by. A white Toyota Corolla bucks out of its parking spot looking to make a U-turn across the breadth of the boulevard, and the grey Honda Civic immediately to my left, in the next lane, swerves but takes the Civic's left front fender on the back quarter. I swerve and hop onto the curb like Steve McQueen on his motorbike in the rolling Swiss hills. And I notch another tally on my Near-Miss count. I stick around, direct traffic around the disabled vehicles for a little bit, wait for the police to show up. Which they wouldn't have, since, thankfully, no blood was spilt, except a cruiser happened to be passing by as the insurance and phone numbers were being exchanged, and we waved them down and made it all official-like. Made me late for everything that day, but that's a small price to pay for the grace of Providence...
  • Am reading a beautifully moving book, Gilead by Marilynne Robinson, which recently won both the Pulitzer and the National Book Award. I literally cannot put it down. Go. Get it and read it, with all deliberate speed. Obey, I say.
  • Last night I was told, at the last minute, that I was not called for that evening's rehearsal. Suddenly, an entirely unoccupied evening sighed open before me. I almost danced a little jig, for joy. Then my roommate G. and I impulsively decided to go see "The Great Escape" at the Laurelhurst Theatre-Pub, arguably my favorite drinking establishment in this fair city. Hence the McQueen reference above. Due to the deteriorating quality of the 1963 print, the last 20 minutes of the movie's sound were about 5 seconds behind the action, which made for a surreal experience after two beers, three slices of pizza and a couple of chocolate chip cookies. Irregardless, I highly recommend it. Richard Attenborough is a bad-ass rockstar. I love to hate Gestapo assholes, with their leather trenchcoats and their supercilious, portfolio-snapping, sinister obsequiousness. Who knew Charles Bronson could act? Impulsive adventures are the best kind.
  • My Swiss pocket-watch stopped. I'm unmoored and deeply perplexed, lost and adrift without my redoubtable timepiece. (Ha. Ain't no way I've ever been punctual in years, timepiece or no timepiece.)
  • A phrase and some sentences from some recent letters I've sent, of which I'm most proud:
    • "...coloring the colorless in shades of grace..."
    • "I think of setting off in search of my Grandpa, to speak with his shade in the tunnels and the deep caves facing the ocean, to ask the questions I could never ask of him, sharing a bottle of his favorite gin with his grave."
    • "[The books in my Library truck] sit packed in crates, color-coded and securely strapped, held in readiness to be deployed, like so many NASA satellites, into the dark, wild universe of our Library's patronage, a multitude of lonely little volumes bravely illuminating our barren hearts."
  • Wandering Housemate S. was telling me some weeks ago, about how she was describing me to some of her castmates in northern California, one of whom, unbeknownst to either of us, happens to know me from elsewhere. "Is he hot?" they ask. "Well. Hm. He's kind of like a Filipino-Superhero-Bear, all in one." Without missing a beat, the Unbeknownst Acquaintance asks, "Is it Paul Susi?"
Yes. Yes, I am.


Anonymous said...

This afternoon I helped a grumpy guy named Paul whose last name I had trouble spelling with his library research. The obvious parallels ended there but I was still amused.

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